1 Act, Book Musical, Thru Sung / Operetta, Rated PG
Broadway Revival Version (1974)
Leonard Bernstein's comedic operetta based on Voltaire's satire of innocence, optimism and the unexpected lessons of life.
With a score by legendary Leonard Bernstein is but the tip of the iceberg when it comes to Candide and its theatrical offerings. With a book from Hugh Wheeler and lyrical contributions from the incomparable Stephen Sondheim, Candide is a masterpiece for the ages.
In one lightning-paced act, Candide -- the bastard cousin of Baron Thunder-Ten-Tonck -- is expelled from home, dragged into the Bulgarian army, brought before the Spanish Inquisition, swindled out of a fortune, shipwrecked on a desert isle, and separated time and again from his true love Cunegonde. She, too, bears a barrage of misfortunes including, but no limited to, sale into prostitution, forced marriage to an exorbitantly wealthy man, and slavery. Through it all, however, they try remember the lessons of their dear master Dr. Pangloss: "Everything is for the best in this best of all possible worlds."
With riotous wit, Candide is a wondrous piece for nearly any company. Scenically it can be as grand or simple as the designer sees fit and, likewise, requires a cast of only moderate size that can be easily expanded to accommodate the grandest of ensembles. Candide is the ideal blend of sophisticated operetta and wacky Python-esque comedy, and will surely thrill a wide range of theatergoers.
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Composer/Lyricist Sherman Edwards was a history teacher turned songwriter from Morristown, New Jersey. He spent ten years working on 1776.